|Publication number||US7461004 B2|
|Application number||US 10/854,888|
|Publication date||Dec 2, 2008|
|Filing date||May 27, 2004|
|Priority date||May 27, 2004|
|Also published as||US7865370, US8121849, US8315881, US20050268317, US20090083784, US20110066432, US20120116773|
|Publication number||10854888, 854888, US 7461004 B2, US 7461004B2, US-B2-7461004, US7461004 B2, US7461004B2|
|Inventors||Christopher J. Cormack, Tony Moy|
|Original Assignee||Intel Corporation|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (3), Referenced by (6), Classifications (14), Legal Events (3)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
A person may receive content, such as a television show, from a content provider. Moreover, in some cases a person will find a particular type of content objectionable. For example, a person might prefer to not hear certain words or phrases. It is known that a content provider may delete or “bleep out” content when many people would find the content objectionable. Such an approach, however, may be impractical for content that is provided in substantially real time (e.g., a live sporting event). In addition, it does not take into account the fact that one person might object to a particular word or phrase while another person does not.
A person may receive content, such as a television show, from a content provider. For example,
As used herein, the phrase “television signal” may refer to any signal that provides audio and video information. A television signal might, for example, be a Digital Television (DTV) signal associated with the Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG) 1 protocol as defined by International Organization for Standardization (ISO)/International Engineering Consortium (IEC) document number 11172-1 entitled “Information Technology—Coding of Moving Pictures and Associated Audio for Digital Storage Media” (1993). Similarly, a television signal may be a High Definition Television (HDTV) signal formatted in accordance with the MPEG4 protocol as defined by ISO/IEC document number 14496-1 entitled “Information Technology—Coding of Audio-Visual Objects” (2001). As still another example, the television signal might be received from a storage device such a Video Cassette Recorder (VCR) or a Digital Video Disk (DVD) player in accordance with the MPEG2 protocol as defined by ISO/IEC document number 13818-1 entitled “Information Technology—Generic Coding of Moving Pictures and Associated Audio Information” (2000).
According to some embodiments, the audio and video processing unit 110 alters the original television signal and provides a modified television signal (e.g., to be played for a viewer). For example, audio information associated with certain words or phrases might be deleted and replaced with silence or another sound.
At 202, an original digital audio block associated with a television signal is received. For example, a tuner and/or an audio decoder might generate a series of digital audio blocks based on an HDTV signal. According to other embodiments, an analog audio signal is received and then converted into a series of digital audio blocks.
At 204, the original digital audio block is translated into a set of words. For example, a processor might execute a speech-to-text conversion function (e.g., voice recognition) on the original digital audio block and generate text that represents the words that are included in that block. Moreover, each word may be associated with an offset value and a duration value. The offset value may represent, for example, a period of time between the beginning of the block and the beginning of the word (e.g., the word begins 1.5 seconds after the beginning of the block). As another example, the offset value may represent a time period between the beginning of the word and another known event (e.g., the beginning of a television show). The duration value may represent, for example, how long the word lasts (e.g., the word lasts 0.5 seconds).
At 206, the translated words are compared to a set of prohibited words. For example, a database might contain a list of prohibited words. In this case, each word in the original digital audio block might be compared to the database to determine whether or not that particular word is prohibited. As another approach, a database might include a list of allowed words (and any word not on the allowed list would be prohibited).
If it is determined that none of the translated words were included in the set of prohibited words at 208, the original digital audio block is output at 210. For example, the original digital audio block might be transmitted to an audio device (e.g., a speaker) and, ultimately, played for a viewer.
If it is determined that at least one of the words was prohibited at 208, removal of the prohibited word is facilitated at 212. In particular, the offset value and the duration value associated with each prohibited word may be used to create a modified digital audio block. For example, a portion of the original digital audio block might be replaced with a number of consecutive replacement portions (e.g., each replacement portion representing silence) based on the offset value and the time value. The modified digital audio block may then be transmitted to an audio device.
As illustrated in Table I, the translating unit 320 might transmit the following information to the content filter processing unit 330:
TABLE I Information Generated By Translating Unit Block ID Word ID Word Text Offset Value Duration Value B001 W01 THIS 0.50 0.50 B001 W02 IS 1.25 0.20 B001 W03 AN 1.50 0.20 B001 W04 EXAMPLE 1.75 0.90
In this case, the digital audio block B001 includes four words, and the fourth word (i.e., “EXAMPLE”) begins 1.75 seconds after the beginning of the block and lasts for 0.90 seconds. According to another embodiment, the offset value instead represents a period of time from the end of the last word in the block.
The content filter processing unit 330 includes a prohibited word database 340. The prohibited word database 340 might simply be, for example, a list of words that a viewer would prefer not to hear. The content filter processing unit 330 can then compare each word received from the translating unit 320 with the words in the prohibited word database 340.
Consider, for example, the first digital audio block 310. In this case, the block 310 did not include any prohibited words—and the content filter processing unit 330 simply outputs the original block 310. Note that, as illustrated by dashed arrows in
Consider now the second digital audio block 312. In this case, the content filter processing unit 330 determined that one of the words received from the translating unit 320 is prohibited. As a result, the audio portion of the block 312 associated with that word is altered (e.g., based on the offset value and the duration value of that word) to create a modified digital audio block 352. By way of example, the original audio might be replaced with silence or a constant tone.
The translating unit 520 can then use the response and output either the original digital audio block 510 (e.g., when a “0” was received from the content filter processing unit 530) or a modified digital audio block 552 (e.g., when a “1” was received from the content filter processing unit 530). Note that in this case, the translating unit 520 may use the offset value and/or duration value associated with the prohibited word in order to create the modified digital audio block 552.
The information in the prohibited word database 540 might be generated in any number of ways. For example, a set-top box could use a pre-defined database and/or a database that is received from a remote device via a network (e.g., from a cable television service). According to some embodiments, a viewer may enter and/or adjust information in the prohibited word database 540. For example, a user might enter or remove a particular word, select a content category (e.g., indicating that violent words should be prohibited), and/or select a content level (e.g., indicating that even mildly objectionable words should be prohibited) via a Graphical User Interface (GUI) and/or a remote control device. According to some embodiments, a log of words that have been deleted or altered is stored (e.g., and may be used by a viewer to change the database 540).
According to some embodiments, different lists of prohibited words are maintained for different viewers and/or different times of day. For example, a parent might create a second list of objectionable words that should be used when a child is viewing content (e.g., and the appropriate list might be selected based on a viewer access code). As another example, a different list of prohibited words might automatically be used before and after 9:00 PM. As still another example, a list of prohibited words might depend on a content provider (e.g., the list might not be used at all when a viewer is watching a science channel). As yet another example, the list of prohibited words might depend on a rating. For example, a first list of words might be used for a show having a “TV-Y7” rating and a second list might be used for a show having a “TV-MA” rating as established by the National Association of Broadcasters, the National Cable Television Association, and the Motion Picture Association of America.
As used herein, the “words” in the prohibited word database 540 may comprise any language word or other sound that might be objectionable to a viewer. By way of example, the translating unit 520 might indicate that the sound of a scream, gunshot, or explosion has been identified in an original digital audio block. In addition, a word might actually be a combination of words. For example, a first word might only be prohibited when used in connection with a second word.
Moreover, according to embodiment, the translating unit 520 and/or content filter processing unit 530 might select a replacement sound from a replacement portion database 560 (e.g., the appropriate replacement portion might be included in the response transmitted from the content filter processing unit 530 to the translating unit 520). The appropriate replacement portion might be based, for example, on a viewer preference or the prohibited word that was identified (e.g., the replacement portion might be audio information that represents the word “heck” or “darn”).
The system also includes a video decoder 621 that receives a video stream. The video decoder then provides video information V and original close-captioned text CCO to a close-captioned text filter 622. The text CCO may be, for example, extracted from line 21 of the received video stream's Vertical Blanking Interval (VBI). According to this embodiment, the text CCO is also provided to the content filter processing unit 630 which can then determine whether or not any of the words are included in the prohibited word database 640. A modified close-captioned text CCM is then provided to a TV encoder 662 via a video renderer 652. For example, characters associated with prohibited words might be replaced with replacement characters.
Referring again to
Moreover, the video receiver 810 may operate in accordance with any of the embodiments described herein. For example, a translating unit 820 might convert an original digital audio block into a set of words, each word being associated with an offset value and a duration value. In addition, a content filter processing unit may (i) determine that at least one of the words is included in a set of prohibited words and (ii) facilitate removal of the prohibited word from the original digital audio block using the offset value and the duration value.
The system 800 may also include a digital output to provide a digital output signal (e.g., to a digital television). Moreover, according to some embodiments, the system 800 further includes a Digital-to-Analog (D/A) converter 840 to provide an analog output signal. The analog signal might be provided to, for example, an analog television or a VCR device. The digital and/or analog outputs may include modified audio and/or video information.
The following illustrates various additional embodiments. These do not constitute a definition of all possible embodiments, and those skilled in the art will understand that many other embodiments are possible. Further, although the following embodiments are briefly described for clarity, those skilled in the art will understand how to make any changes, if necessary, to the above description to accommodate these and other embodiments and applications.
Although some embodiments have been described with respect to television signals, according to other embodiments a content filter processing unit may instead be provided in a stereo, radio, or portable music device. For example, a portable music device adapted to play music in accordance with the MPEG1 audio layer 3 (MP3) standard might remove objectionable lyrics from music. As another example, such a filter might be used to remove certain words from a game system or PC (e.g., information received via the Internet).
Moreover, although some embodiments have been described with respect to a video receiver, according to other embodiments a video server instead includes a content filter processing unit. For example, a cable television service might include such a filter. As another example, such a filter might used when a television show is transmitted in substantially real-time (e.g., a live sporting event).
In addition, according to other embodiments each prohibited word is associated with an offset value, but not a duration value. For example, all audio information in a four second window around a prohibited word's offset value might be suppressed. As another example, an entire audio block might be suppressed.
The several embodiments described herein are solely for the purpose of illustration. Persons skilled in the art will recognize from this description other embodiments may be practiced with modifications and alterations limited only by the claims.
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|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
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|U.S. Classification||704/500, 704/501, 704/251, 704/278|
|International Classification||H04H1/00, G10L19/00, H04H60/37, H03M13/00, H04H60/58|
|Cooperative Classification||H04H20/10, H04H60/37, H04H60/58|
|European Classification||H04H60/58, H04H60/37|
|May 27, 2004||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: INTEL CORPORATION, CALIFORNIA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:CORMACK, CHRISTOPHER J.;MOY, TONY;REEL/FRAME:015403/0500
Effective date: 20040519
|May 30, 2012||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|May 19, 2016||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8